It's time to call last drinks on 'influencers' using social media to sell cocktails, wine and champagne, VicHealth says.
Victoria's health promotion foundation looked into Australia's top 70 Instagram influencers and found almost three quarters featured alcoholic drinks in their posts, but only a quarter fully revealed they'd been paid to do so.
VicHealth Acting CEO Dr Lyn Roberts said the "underhanded" nature of the social media posts made it difficult for young people to know when they were being sold an ad.
"We also know that young people who like or follow alcohol brands on social media are twice as likely to drink at risky levels than those who don't," Dr Roberts said.
"For every advertising dollar spent, young people drink three per cent more alcohol."
The research found big alcohol companies were using social media as a key tool to promote their products as cool and glamorous to an impressionable audience.
VicHealth on Monday launched a Top Spin, a statewide competition encouraging young people to call out sneaky tactics used by the alcohol industry to influence them to drink.